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Tuesday, July 28, 2020

DGT ST AL MASS LIBOActs 10:9

Liturgy of the Hours – Part II

Peter went up to the roof terrace to pray at about noontime.

Sext is the traditional noontime prayer and those who are frequent visitors of The Noontimes gather petitions to send on to God.  This pause in the middle of the day can steady frayed nerves and give us courage.  Pausing to relieve the tensions we experience in the living of ordinary lives, we place the burden of our worries precisely where they belong . . . in God’s capable and loving hands.

The None or Nones prayers are gathered at 3:00 p.m. and when we read scripture carefully we discover that the apostles maintained the Jewish tradition of going up to the Temple at this hour to pray.  In Acts 3 we read a delightful story of God entering into Peter and John’s lives in an amazing way when they go up to the temple area to pray at the three o’clock hour of prayer.  We modern-day disciples are given the chance to join our prayers with others as this mid afternoon hour moves from east to west around the globe . . . and to ask for our own amazing experience.

Sext at noon and None as we reach the middle of the afternoon, these prayer intervals interrupt the denser part of the work day and ask us to pause either for a sliver of a moment or for a half hour or hour, whatever is practical in our lives.  Sext and None, keeping us anchored as we bring our work to God. Sext and None, guiding us through hectic and perhaps tense hours. Sext and None . . . preparing us for our return home to take refuge before night closes us in.

These two afternoon intervals, along with their sisters in this rhythmic cycle of prayer, bring to us an opening to God’s presence in a special way.  Matins, Lauds, Prime, Terce, Sext, Nones, Vespers or Evensong, and ComplineThese invitations to join the faithful in prayer lifted to the Creator are ours.  These opportunities each day and night as a call to bring our sorrows and joys to God are ours.  These petitions and offertories we bring forward as our hopes and dreams regularly and faithfully are the heartbeats of the Spirit that unite us.

Whenever and wherever possible let us pause, if even only for a moment, at these appointed times to join our sisters and brothers in Christ because in this way we will come to more completely understand that we are never alone. In this way we more intensely feel that we are always accompanied.  And in this way we more fully join the chorus that rises like incense to God in a powerful cascade of love and prayer.


We can spend time on with The Story of the crippled beggar at the Beautiful Gate in Acts 3.

Image from: http://dailytimewithgod.com/?p=3907

To read about research that investigates the power of prayer, go to: http://content.time.com/time/health/article/0,8599,193084,00.html

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